Starting an internet company in USA as a foreigner


I am a student in USA. And I have an idea for a startup. I have people with me (US Citizens) who are willing to help me establishing this company.So i am wondering now what do i need to do (legally) in order to start this company. I will be founder of the company, so what visa do i need or what procedures do i need to perform ?


Foreign Company USA

asked Mar 16 '12 at 01:39
Jeet Robert
6 points

2 Answers


My way:

  1. Find a partner
  2. Form a C-corp (not LLC, no S-corp)
  3. Make your partner a president, accountant and whatever else required there.
  4. You must be ONLY a shareholder, nothing else. You must NOT hold any position in the company and you can NOT get any salary
  5. Do whatever you want after that: development, marketing, sales, just don't violate (4).

That's pretty much it. From what I learned that's the only safe way to start a company in the US if you don't have a green card/citizenship.

answered Mar 16 '12 at 03:32
970 points
  • i see thank you – Jeet Robert 12 years ago


I started a company on my own when I was on OPT. I think it's a good option to get OPT and start the company. Once you register the company you can apply for e-verify. After you have been approved for e-verify you can extend your OPT(STEM extension) or get a H1B sponsorship through your company. I am not sure but one of friend got a L-1 visa(but he has company registered in India and his US firm is a subsidiary of his Indian firm).

answered Mar 16 '12 at 04:12
24 points
  • The problem with that is that in case of audit you'll have to prove that what you do for your company is consistent with your field of study. – Salmon 12 years ago
  • i see. so i do have a partner. everything will be registered on his name. one done registering the company, i can get a sponsorship letter for H1B from him/company right ? – Jeet Robert 12 years ago
  • Most probably you won't be able to get H-1b from such a small company. – Salmon 12 years ago
  • If you just graduated or still a student I suggest you to get a OPT/CPT. You will be able to register a company under your name as long as you have a valid SSN. And as long as you are on OPT your personal income tax will be 0%. You have to show some growth and revenue for H1-B. I am not sure if there a target you have to meet but try your best. – User899893 12 years ago
  • i see.thanks everyone – Jeet Robert 12 years ago

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